Moderate Drinking of Alcohol Tied to Longer and Cognitively Healthier Life in Study

Moderate Drinking of Alcohol Tied to Longer and Cognitively Healthier Life in Study
Consuming alcoholic beverages on a daily or near-daily basis was linked to a cognitively healthy and longer life in older adults in a study by led researchers at the University of California San Diego. Moderate to heavy (but not excessive) drinking was defined as up to three daily alcoholic beverages for women and for men age 65 or older, and up to four for men under age 65. The study, titled “Alcohol Intake and Cognitively Healthy Longevity in Community-Dwelling Adults: The Rancho Bernardo Study,” is the first "to examine the association of the amount and frequency of alcohol consumption with cognitively healthy longevity versus being cognitively impaired in later life or dying before age 85," its authors report. It was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. With people living longer, health concerns are shifting toward helping them achieve or maintain lifestyles that preserve cognitive well-being. Alcohol intake is known to affect cognitive health, with most studies concluding that moderate alcohol consumption has a positive effect. But this association has not always been consistent across studies. The researchers set out to study the relationship between the amount and frequency of alcohol intake and its relation to cognitive health by analyzing the drinking habits and health of 1,344 older adults living in Rancho Bernardo, a suburb of San Diego. Alcohol intake was determined by questionnaires administered between 1984–87 and cognitive health evaluated in six visits, undertaken every
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